Vol.XVIII: Violin Sonatas. Brahms, op.78, Shostakovich, op.134

Oleg Kagan (Violin), Sviatoslav Richter (Piano); Moscow 1988

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The plenitude of chamber music recordings in which Richter participates offers further insight into the interpretative art of this giant of the piano. He delivers the piano part in the Adagio of the Brahms Regenlied Sonata with a magic that is otherwise unheard (LCL 183). And his playing in the Schostakowitsch Violin Sonata (LCL 183) and Piano Trio No. 2, with Natalia Gutman (LCL 172) makes these discs special to everyone who has an open ear for the hidden drama of live and death in Schostakowitsch’s music. His recordings with Kagan by far exceed in quantity his recorded collaboration with Kagan’s teacher David Oistrakh, which was sadly limited to a few major works. Here one finds all the classic Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert violin sonatas and one can also encounter such rarities as Medtner’s Violin Sonata No. 1, Op. 21 (LCL191).

Stephan Bultmann, Continental Report, Spring 2000

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